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Business Isn't School

Thursday, March 30, 2017

By Beth Meixner

I read an article entitled The Single Biggest Mistakes I’ve Seen Women Make at Work by Sallie Krawcheck, Chair of Ellevate Network.   Sallie expressed the idea that women (particularly young women) are mistaking business for school.  They think that working hard, delivering a great product on time and on budget and plodding through with their heads down will get them promotions, raises or even noticed. 

It is just the opposite, says Sallie, and I agree.  It’s networking and tooting your own horn!  Raise your head from your desk, meet people, tell others what you’ve done and what you are working on (other than your boss) and get recognition for your accomplishments. 

Its important to realize the three channels of networking: 1) inside your company, 2) outside business organizations and professionals and 3) family, friends and social acquaintances.  If you want to move up in your company, start engaging with other departments, meet colleagues (above, below and on your level) for lunch and talk about your work in an exciting, innovative way.  People respond to passion – let yours shine through and be branded as a person with creativity, drive and upward movement.

Now, tooting your own horn can be tricky for women.  Its unfortunate that we walk a fine line between coming across as assertive or aggressive.  Some may see our bravado as pretentious while others see confidence.  Either way, we have to sell ourselves and be proud of achievements rather than waiting for someone else to notice and do it for us.

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